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A Better Life

Peter Campbell, 2 April 1981

Homes fit for Heroes 
by Mark Swenarton.
Heinemann, 216 pp., £14.50, February 1981, 0 435 32994 4
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The Shell Book of the Home in Britain 
by James Ayres.
Faber, 253 pp., £8.95, March 1981, 0 571 11625 6
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... an occupied interior, of a council house). The situation is not much better for earlier periods. James Ayres’s The Home in Britain can claim to be the first book on ‘Decoration, Design and Construction of Vernacular Interiors, 1500-1850’: this would be surprising if, on looking through the illustrations, it did not become clear how fragmentary the ...

The Labour of Being at Ease

John Mullan, 28 October 1999

Characteristicks of Men, Manners, Opinions, Times: Volume I 
by Anthony Ashley Cooper, 3rd Earl of Shaftesbury, edited by Philip Ayres.
Oxford, 331 pp., £65, March 1999, 0 19 812376 0
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Characteristicks of Men, Manners, Opinions, Times: Volume II 
by Anthony Ashley Cooper, 3rd Earl of Shaftesbury, edited by Philip Ayres.
Oxford, 397 pp., £65, March 1999, 0 19 812377 9
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... the 1st Earl of Shaftesbury, leader of the Whigs opposed to the accession of the Catholic James II. The 1st Earl was immortalised as the satanic Achitophel of Dryden’s brilliant exercise in monarchist propaganda: ‘For close designs and crooked counsels fit,/Sagacious, bold, and turbulent of wit’. To his grandson, however, he was the epitome of ...

Y2K = AP2583

Jonathan Rée: 17th-century philosophy, 10 June 1999

TheCambridge History of 17th-Century Philosophy 
edited by Daniel Garber and Michael Ayres.
Cambridge, 1616 pp., £90, April 1998, 0 521 58864 2
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... be ‘studied but in passage’. Ancient philosophy might be dead, but with the blessing of King James, a fertile new philosophy was about to take its place – ‘a spouse, for generation, fruit and comfort’ as Bacon put it – and its vigorous offspring were destined to conquer new worlds of ‘endless progress or proficience’. Seventeenth-century ...

My Missus

John Sutherland, 13 May 1993

Popular Reading and Publishing in Britain, 1914-1950 
by Joseph McAleer.
Oxford, 284 pp., £35, December 1992, 0 19 820329 2
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American Star: A Love Story 
by Jackie Collins.
Heinemann, 568 pp., £14.99, March 1993, 0 434 14093 7
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... will look at the books in the rack with a new respect now that one knows their origins in Henry James and Nietzsche. The principle on which Mills & Boon runs its list is that the imprint is always greater than the author. Over the years, the firm has built up a stable of romancers several of whom (like Jean S. Macleod) have a hundred or more titles to their ...

Then place my purboil’d Head upon a Stake

Colin Burrow: British and Irish poetry, 7 January 1999

Poetry and Revolution: An Anthology of British and Irish Verse 1625-1660 
edited by Peter Davidson.
Oxford, 716 pp., £75, July 1998, 0 19 818441 7
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... ever trying to leap into ladies’ laps: Nor ought the thunder of their Carabins Drowne the sweet Ayres of our tun’d Violins. One positive thing was achieved by the collections of poems which appeared in the 1640s: they allowed the poetry of the 1630s to make a point about the harsher times and literary tones of the following decade. When Carew remarks to ...

Picture in Little

Charles Nicholl: Hilliard’s Trajectory, 9 December 2019

Nicholas Hilliard: Life of an Artist 
by Elizabeth Goldring.
Yale, 337 pp., £40, February 2019, 978 0 300 24142 6
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... next to your heart. In his autobiography, Lord Herbert of Cherbury recounts how his admirer, Lady Ayres, had a full-size portrait of him ‘contracted into little form’, and wore it round her neck ‘so low that she hid it under her breasts’. Trouble ensued when her husband found her lying in bed, studying this amorous talisman by candlelight. Miniatures ...

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